Too much flossing can damage your gums and so can flossing the wrong way. Let’s tackle this problem by first understanding what flossing does.
The Purpose of Flossing
According to the American Dental Association (ADA), flossing removes trapped food from between the teeth. However, even more importantly, it also removes plaque, which is a film of bacteria that builds up on the teeth. Within about 24 hours, plaque will form on your teeth, which is why dentists recommend flossing once a day.
Why is removing plaque so important?
As plaque collects between your teeth, it forms tartar, which is a hard mineral deposit. Tartar can lead to cavities, infected gums, receding gums and gum disease.
How to Floss
You need to floss against both teeth, not just one, or you’ll only remove half of the available plaque. That’s why you move the floss up against one tooth and then the other.
It’s a good idea to use different sections of the floss between different teeth so you don’t just put the plaque back into the mouth against a different tooth. You also need to floss around braces, bridges, implants and any other dental fixtures in your mouth to remove the plaque. Also make sure you floss behind the back molars in your mouth to remove the plaque on the backside of those teeth.
How Not to Floss
Unless you have a piece of food stuck that you’re trying to remove between some teeth, you shouldn’t floss multiple times a day. There is such as thing as too much flossing. You want to avoid irritating your gums. Don’t floss below the gum line either. Damaged gum tissue can lead to infection and gum disease along with receding gums and root exposure.
Get Regular Dental Checkups
Along with daily flossing, you should get regular checkups. At Hutto Hippo Family Dental, Dr. Baker can help you take good care of your teeth and gums so you stay healthy.